Today we return to our Justice-by-Justice review of the voting patterns of the Justices of the Illinois Supreme Court. We’ve been analyzing whether the Justices’ question patterns allow us to tentatively infer the Justices’ likely votes, and which Justices might be writing opinions.
Table 96 contains the data for cases in which Justice Karmeier votes with the majority. On the left side of the Table we see Justice Karmeier’s question patterns in reversals. Justice Karmeier tends to ask significantly more questions when he’s writing the majority opinion in a reversal, both of appellants and appellees. Writing a special concurrence has little impact on Justice Karmeier’s question patterns.
The pattern is similar with affirmances. Justice Karmeier asks four times as many questions of both appellants and appellees when he’s writing the majority opinion. In contrast to the situation with reversals, Justice Karmeier averages somewhat more questions even when he’s writing a concurrence than when he’s not writing an opinion.
In Table 97 below, we address cases in which Justice Karmeier was in the minority. Although the sample size was quite small, when Justice Karmeier was in the minority of a reversal, he averaged more questions of both appellants and appellees when not writing an opinion than when he wrote a dissent. On the other hand, when Justice Karmeier was in the minority of an affirmance, he averaged significantly more questions of both appellants and appellees when writing a dissent than when he was not writing an opinion.
Tomorrow, we’ll address whether Justice Karmeier’s voting and writing affects the likelihood of his asking either side the first question.